Grey Rock, Laporte, CO

Although in the last month I have re-done a number of amazing hikes, I’ve already covered those in previous blog posts (Check out Horsetooth Falls and Arthurs Rock!). My latest (and now favorite) hike of them all is Grey Rock, located in Laporte, Colorado.


This hike was about a twenty minute drive from my apartment, but unfortunately, the trailhead I mapped out was not the correct one. It was 4:30 am when I left, and going into the mountains at that time means absolutely no light. The trailhead I was led to had closed gates, and since I didn’t want a trespassing ticket, I headed further into the mountains in search of phone service. There is literally no service at 90% of places throughout the mountains, but if I could get some I would be able to map out a route to a new trailhead.

Whether it be fate, or getting lost in the right direction, I found the actual trailhead for Grey Rock about 7 minutes further down the road, and an open (and free!) parking lot. It was great–and proved that I didn’t get up at four in the morning for nothing. No way did I want to turn back at that point, so you can imagine my excitement when I found the real trailhead.

I wish I could tell you what the first half of the hike looked like–but walking in the middle of the forest, with only flashlights on the path in front of you at five in the morning, kind of neglects you of that courtesy. But don’t worry!

By around 6:15, I could see light peaking up over the edges of the trees and hills that surrounded us. We began to turn our flashlights off as time went on, until we were completely in light around 6:45 am. Our goal was to reach the summit of Grey Rock around sunrise (6:50 am), but we weren’t to the top until about 7:15 am.

It will take you about an hour and a half to two hours to reach the summit–keep that in mind for sunrise or sunset hikes.

So, I have to say that the view was amazing, breathtaking, awesome. It didn’t take long for me to realize this was my favorite hike by far. Whether that be that I couldn’t see all the elevation gain I was doing in the dark, or the summit’s outlook, or the whole feel of the hike itself–it made it all absolutely worth it.

On the way down, I got to see what we actually had accomplished on the way up. The hike started on a rocky dirt path, intertwining between a stream, and a majority of the time was spent on this type of trail (about one hour). Then, the path becomes more elevated, leading you to a false summit, where you then can view the actual Grey Rock in its entirety.


Following the trail and eventual cairns, you are rock climbing to the very end. This last half mile is difficult and I suggest breaking often, as well as constantly checking that you are going in the right direction (as one wrong move might lead you off a cliff). The view is spectacular. I mean, I’ve been on top of plenty of mountains, but this one was my favorite.

I can’t wait to go back–and I hope to do that very soon!

Some tips: Bring plenty of water, bring sturdy hiking boots or shoes (that you wouldn’t mind getting dirty), bring your camera, and bring your friends!

As always, safe and happy hiking.



Cheers To The Second Year


Here we are again–back at the Colorado State University. There was a point in time when I never thought I would have another first day of school here, when I never thought I would be a mile high for anything other than to visit, when I never thought I would walk this campus again as a Ram.

But here we are. So it goes as they say.

I’m someone who forgives others way too easily and way too much. I can give you a thousand chances before I learn a thing or two, and it actually worked out for me this time.

After my first semester of my first year, transferring was a big option for my future. I applied and looked toward other schools, researched scholarships, programs, and rankings, as well as contacted some advisors. It didn’t help that I kept this from everyone and was planning on suggesting the change at the start of summer. But even I couldn’t last that long with such a big secret. April was my breaking point on being honest with my family and making those life-altering decisions. But I gave CSU another chance.

I am able to look back on that second semester, on everything it was, and say that I made it. That I’m okay. That I’m happy now. And I have never felt such a sense of pride and growth, of comfort and confidence, of ease and lack of doubt. I don’t worry anymore. I don’t feel like I did anymore. I don’t forget though, I can’t. Because I learned so much in that first year–about college, about people, about myself. About how I want to live my life and what I want to get out of it.

I am so thankful. I thank my lucky stars every single day for what has happened to me. For what hasn’t happened to me. For what will happen to me. I am so blessed. I am beyond grateful for everything happening exactly as it did to bring me to where I am today. I wake up every day with a huge smile on my face, with a plan, with a goal, and with the peace of mind I never had last year.

I know what college really is now. I know what it is supposed to be like. I know what its all cracked up to be. And I’m cherishing every moment of it. I’m not going to say I deserve this happiness, because it can be taken away just as easily as it was gained, but I can appreciate it that much more from what happened in my past year. It isn’t enough to even do that, but knowing how precious it all is has given me this new love for life. Its quite amazing. And so is this adventure I am beginning. Lets see where it takes me. Lets let it go and just be. Be here where we are.